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It’s been a long time coming, but I think we are on the cusp of Polysign revealing what they've been up to for the past three years. We got confirmation December of last year that Polysign was in early Beta and would be going live in 2020. Also, it looks like there are design changes in order with respects to the webpage. Most of us know Polysign to be a digital asset custodial service/infrastructure platform as David’s answer to a question he fielded from a student at the University of Texas indicates. Going back a few years, we had our first indication, at the end of 2017, that Ripple would be taking the much-needed steps to begin building the necessary “market infrastructure” (i.e. custody and financial hedging instruments) needed to entice more institutional participation. According to Ripple this “market infrastructure” is needed to grow/stabilize the crypto markets overall but more importantly, to help with XRP. Miguel Vias, Head of XRP Markets commented in the last paragraph of Ripple’s Q4 XRP Markets Report for 2017: “While customers can use XRP for on-demand liquidity through xRapid, we want to build the necessary markets infrastructure for eventual direct usage of XRP by financial institutions. In Q1, we’ll begin work towards the launch of institutional hedging instruments and custody solutions. Both of these market components are important to institutional adoption and thus are important components of our 2018 roadmap.” On a Credit Suisse panel discussion (03:20 – 05:07), Miguel Vias alluded to the fact that you can’t build a vibrant crypto ecosystem with institutional players (i.e. hedge funds & investment banks) without first solving for custody or the safeguarding of these digital/crypto assets. Once you do this, you allow for the development of prime brokerage firms, lending, and hedging instruments (i.e. Derivatives, Options, Futures, ETFs, etc). Just recently, I happen to stumble upon a couple of interesting Tweets from @Arturo_P_A, Tweet One from February and Tweet Two from yesterday. In the first, @Arturo_P_A offers his opinions regarding the synergistic relationship he believes will develop between Ripple and Polysign. In particular, around on-boarding ODL-based exchanges, conflict-of-interest around XRP custody for these ODL exchanges and Ripple, and new use cases. What really piqued my interest is what @Arturo_P_A reveals in the second Tweet. It looks as if we have confirmation of one of Polysign’s first customers or maybe a subsidiary of Polysign, Standard Custody & Trust Company. It appears that Polysign has submitted a request for a custodial charter license in New York that was still pending as of February 6th 2020. Assuming that Standard Custody will, in some way, shape, form, or fashion, have some affiliation with Ripple it made me think about a couple of @KarmaCoverage Medium posts: What could xPool be? An attempted guess How xPool may work? An attempted guess It seems to me that Ripple now have the necessary foundational infrastructure in place to get escape velocity needed to truly execute their IoV vision: RippleNet - for the transference of value Interledger Protocol - for seamless connectivity and interoperability between di-separate traditional financial/blockchain-based systems/platforms Codius – for agnostic smart contract development for DeFi products Polysign – digital asset custody.
Maybe I missed this acquisition announcement, but It appears that Ripple has acquired TOWO Labs, a startup based in Sweden October 17th 2019 per Crunchbase. The only announcement that I could find linking TOWO Labs to Ripple prior to this was a Xpring investment that was announced by Danny Aranda on October 16th, 2019. TOWO Labs confirmed the investment with an announcement of their own via a Coil post: "Towo Labs, a Swedish startup aimed at simplifying crypto self-custody, today announced a strategic investment from Xpring, Ripple’s developer initiative to build the internet of value." "The investment will support Towo Labs’ development of hardware wallet firmware with support for all XRP Ledger (XRPL) transaction types and a trustless, non-custodial web interface to the XRP Ledger." "At the outset, Towo Labs will focus on developing hardware wallet firmware with full XRPL support for Ledger Nano S, Ledger Nano X and Trezor T — making it easier to securely sign any transaction type. All open-source code contributions will be subject to the involved repositories normal contribution guidelines. Today’s existing firmware only supports XRP payment transactions, which in some cases block further XRPL and Interledger innovation. The new firmware, however, will support the signing of cross-currency payments, trust lines, escrows, orders, payment channels, account settings and so forth." The only acquisitions that I was aware of were Logos, Strata Labs, and Algrim, all of which Ripple/Xpring publicly announced.
I've been wondering about this question regarding big players, institutions and such.. Can custody solutions somehow be integrated with markets? What I mean is, when it is not secure to keep huge stacks of xrp on the exchanges, what happens to liquidity? Can somebody have their assets safe at the same time as having them on the market? (Thinking about xRapid here). Sure my zerps can't be both on the nano s and exchange x simultaneously, but how about custody and other large scale stuff?
Kingdom Trust worked with BitGo to integrate XRP. Now BitGo owns them. A big barrier to financial institutions directly using XRP are custody solutions, or the lack thereof. This is an exciting merger of two great companies. https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-01-25/bitgo-to-acquire-bitcoin-custodian-as-it-targets-big-investors?cmpid=socialflow-twitter-business&utm_content=business&utm_campaign=socialflow-organic&utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=social https://ripple.com/insights/its-never-been-easier-to-access-and-store-xrp/